A desperate mother who has chained her autistic son up for years has now released a shocking video which reveals how he lives, limbs bound by metal, in a desperate bid to secure medical help.
Marisa Padilha, 47, who lives in the city of Fernandopolis, in the south eastern Brazilian state of Sao Paulo, says her son Andre harms himself if he is not restrained in this way.
Andre, now aged 28, has been kept in chains for 13 years since he became more violent as a teenager , she says.
His behaviour started to change aged 10 and the medicine and therapy he was prescribed for autism had little effect and Marisa now thinks the diagnosis is either inaccurate or incomplete.
She said He takes some pills per day and even then he keeps beating himself, biting himself and shouting a lot. He must have a bigger problem that has not been diagnosed.
In the video she recorded, she says she cannot stand to see her son chained and asks for help from medical professionals.
She says in the film He beat himself, he attacked himself… I cannot stand living in this situation, to see the kid chained day and night.
Every kind of help is welcome for our family, but I am currently looking for a specialist to make a specific examination but we cannot afford the cost.
She also said Andre is not violent with other people, only with himself.
Marisa claimed that she had to quit her job to take care of her son when he was 10 years old. Andre was hospitalised and started to take medicine but the reaction was not what doctors expected.
She says of her decision to chain him aged 15 I could not control him. It was day and night to keep an eye over him in order to stop him hurting himself. Then I started to use the chain.
The city council of Fernandopolis said in a press statement that the boy had been visited by social services for years.
It said a judge had ruled that, due to his aggressive behaviour, Andre should be cared for in his home while receiving support from psychologists.
Andre gets monthly visits to give him medicine, evaluate his vital signs and test his mental situation, said the council.
He is also receiving medical visits when needed.
The statement admitted that Andre was not responding well to drugs intended to curb his aggression.